Brent Crude, Brent Sweet Light Crude, Oseberg, Forties

Brent crude is one of the most important crude oil benchmarks. This benchmark oil is an amalgamation of crude oils from fifteen different oil fields in the Ninian, Cormorant, Alwyn and Brent region of the North Sea. The Brent Blend, London Brent and Brent Petroleum are other names for the Brent Crude oil marker. Two-thirds of the world’s petroleum supplies is priced using the Brent Crude as a standard. The Brent Crude benchmark is followed in Europe, the Middle East and Africa

Brent Crude: Characteristics

The Brent Crude marker is used to classify the Brent Crude, Brent Sweet Light Crude, Oseberg and Forties. These have the following characteristics:

  • Brent Crude: It is a light, sweet crude, with an API gravity of 38.06 and a specific gravity of around 0.835. The sulfur content is around 0.37%. The refineries for Brent Crude are located in Northwest Europe. However, with feasible export prices, it can also be refined in the Mediterranean region or the United States.
    • Oseberg Crude: It has an API gravity of around 37.8 and specific gravity of 0.8359. The sulfur content is around 0.27%.
    • Forties Crude: Obtained from the Central North Sea, Forties Crude has an API gravity of around 40.3. The sulfur content is nearly 0.56%.

    Brent Crude: Trading

    Till 2005, Brent Crude was traded on the International Petroleum Exchange (IPE) in London. IPE was an open outcry exchange and Brent Crude was its flagship commodity. However, since 2005, Brent Crude is being traded on the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE). The ICE is an American financial company, specializing in energy products, such as crude oil and natural gas.

    Brent Crude trading has been considered a safe option owing to the proximity of the crude sources to the refineries. Due to this, the financial risk involved in the transit period (from the time of purchase to the time of delivery) is minimized.

    However, the exhaustion of the North Sea reserves is exerting pressure on the forward prices of Brent Crude.

    Brent Crude: Some Interesting Facts

    Here are some interesting facts related to Brent Crude:

    • The name “Brent†was derived from the Brent Goose. This was a result of the naming policy of Shell UK Exploration and Production (functioning on behalf of Shell and Exxon), which tended to name all its oil fields after birds.
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    • The geographical features of the Scottish highlands are made up of five layers, namely Broom, Rannoch, Etive, Ness and Tarbert. These too have contributed to the nomenclature of this oil benchmark.
    • Brent Crude is traded under the symbol ‘LCO,’ which stands for Light Cycle Oil.

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